Child Development

Mobilizing Your Middle School Small Groups to Serve

As a first-year teacher, one of the best things I said yes to was leading an extra-curricular group called “SHOUT.” This group consisted of student leaders who wanted to help… Read More

How To Help Students Identify Emotions

Talking about emotions is a learned skill. And being able to name the things you're feeling is a first step to being able to deal and respond to those feelings. Read More

Kids Are People Who Haven’t Stopped Growing

In the 80’s movie, the Breakfast Cub, four distinctly different teenagers have a vulnerable moment in the school library where they all confess a common fear of becoming like their parents. Ally Sheedy put it this way. “It’s inevitable. When you grow… Read More

Expect a Crisis: Faith in Middle School

There are three drives that are hardwired in every kid: Wonder Discovery Passion If you think about those drives as dials you turn to help a kid connect with God, then what if you turn those dials to different volumes for different… Read More

The Last 52 Weeks

Twelfth grade. The phase when your emerging adult pulls away, gets closer, does things for the last time; and you both start asking, “What’s next?” If sixteen is “sweet,” then eighteen is “legal.” This kid is no longer a child. Technically speaking,… Read More

Motivations and Moral Compasses: Helping Students Discern What Is Right

Growing up has always been hard work. And it’s even more challenging today. Think for a minute about how access, connection, and pressure have changed since you were in a student. Today’s generation is growing up in a world where: Alcohol abuse… Read More

How to Help High Schoolers Respond to Cultural Changes

Every phase has unique cultural changes. But you can’t discover everything you need to know about the culture of childhood and adolescence in a book. By the time a book is printed, culture has changed. The only way for you to learn… Read More

Middle School: Understanding This Wonderfully Awkward Phase

Oh, the days of seventh and eighth grade…the phase when nothing you do is cool, everything is fun in a crowd; and one smart kid will remind you, “yeah…I know.” Here are a few things you’ll start to discover about kids in… Read More

If They Aren’t Asking Questions, They Aren’t Listening

There are three drives that are hardwired in every kid:   Wonder Discovery Passion  If you think about those drives as dials you turn to help a kid connect with God, then what if you turn those dials to different volumes for different… Read More

Helping Middle Schoolers Answer: Who Am I?

Every phase of a kid's life has unique cultural changes. But you can’t discover everything you need to know about the culture of childhood and adolescence in a book. By the time a book is printed, culture has changed.  The only way… Read More